I’ve decided to write notes describing each of the tracks on Loving Every Other Minute of It. I’ll publish one of these pieces per month until I touch on all ten tracks. Start at the beginning of the series here.
Raquel and I moved to Ashland, Oregon in 2003. We spent one year, 2008, in the Chicago area and moved back to Oregon — Portland this time — in 2009.
I cannot tell you how happy I was to get back to this state. Oregon is the only state where certain folks seem to be able to function happily. We rented a house on the outskirts of town, and I proceeded to write three songs about Oregon, two of which wound up on Loving Every Other Minute of It, including “Another Song About Oregon.”
A few of the lyrics in the song seem to pique people’s interest. The chorus starts:
We live in Oregon. Oh, can’t you see?
We don’t like football. Don’t watch TV.
My cohort Bret Hartley was the first to point out that there are plenty of football fans in Oregon. Fair enough. It just sounded like a funny thing a Portlander might say. Also, having known a few football-dominated locales in my day, I can tell you that football culture here is not like it is in other places. There are plenty of football fans in Oregon, and good for them. There are also plenty of people who enjoy other things, and this seems like a healthy mix to me.
Another chorus from the song includes the lines:
We live in Oregon. Oh, yes, we do.
We like the Minutemen and Hüsker Dü.
Again, this couplet struck me as funny, and I like that it references two bands that Bret and I idolized in our youth back in Moline, Illinois. Bret and I have a deep fondness for rock trios: the Minutemen, Hüsker Dü, Uncle Tupelo, Rush, the Police, Nirvana. I like to think that Bret, Kevin, and I bring a trio ethos to our recordings, even if we include some overdubs that break a bit with that mold. Part of the reason I wanted this song to be first on the album is that I wanted to reference our inclination for trios front and center, something for the listener to take with them as they move through the other songs. In a general sense, Bret and I prefer to keep the music within the scope of a rock trio, and even when it isn’t, I feel like that ethos remains in some way.
Finally, the song is called “Another Song About Oregon” in direct reference to the similar line from the Refreshments song “Mexico.” Again, I thought this was funny, which is often my first clue that I’m on to something I’d like to pursue musically. Also, back when the Refreshments were a thing, I was rather lost about my place in the world. When I got back to Oregon in 2009, I wasn’t anymore.
Laying down the law,